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Calligraphy at the dinner table.
Wolfgang Wick of Buero MAGENTA interviewed me for the latest issue of Slanted magazine
Ewan Clayton demonstrates how to cut a goose quill for writing.
Our typeface Sonar-Sans got a namesake and then, unexpectedly they started to get along.
external link http://www.slanted.de/events/32-seiten-fuer-48-stunden
→ Berlin's biggest cultural festival, «48 Stunden Neukölln» features over 600 separate events on a single weekend in June. Two designers, Thomas Lehner and Dirk Heider, created a visual identity for this unique project by employing a custom style of Arouet, a family of typefaces slated for release by the Kombinat-Typefounders in early 2013.
A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival
Photograph with kind permission by Tanja Kapahnke, © 2012.

Creating the typeface

The choice of typeface for the editorial text as well as the event listings, fell on Arouet, which at that point was available to Thomas in an early beta version in three optical weights. But I had designed it with very small text in mind and Arouet was just a little too wide for the purpose the two designers had in mind. So Thomas approached me around Christmas and put the idea to create a narrow version of Arouet into my mind. Through the holidays I started drawing two very condensed masters. That way I would be able to interpolate any width in any optical weight.

A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, Arouet in Superpolator
Interpolation of an instance with the perfect weight and width (third from the top) between four masters in Superpolator.



As time to design the program drew closer, Dirk and Thomas joined me in my studio for a day, and together we found the perfect combination of features in the type design of Arouet to serve their very specific purposes.

A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, Arouet deck on newsprint
A close view of the deck in Arouet-Neukölln on newsprint.



A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, Arouet small-print on newsprint
Smaller even, the event schedule in Arouet-Neukölln on newsprint.



The designer's choice for a sans serif typeface fell on the U8, Anton Koovit's revival of typical 1920's Berlin subway signage, originally designed by the architect Alfred Grenander. Anton and I both happen to work freelance for Luc(as) de Groot, which is a complete coincidence and just another one of these nice, small-world moments. Or as Camila would put it: "The world is a napkin" (#shoutOut).

Typography, the visual expression of inherent structure

Thomas and Dirk tackled the task of making this enormous dataset completely transparent and accessible by choosing a real old school solution: tabloid format newsprint and hard core information design. The two Swiss educated designers analyzed, categorized, zoned, mapped, listed and illustrated the plentitude of events, locations and neighborhoods into an elegant, 32-page program.

A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival
Photograph with kind permission by Tanja Kapahnke, © 2012.



A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, cover
Photograph with kind permission by Tanja Kapahnke, © 2012.



Exhibition in the designer's work space

During the festival Thomas Lehner and Dirk Heider opened the doors of their workspace to the «48 Stunden Neukölln» public, presenting among other work, their design for the festival's program.

A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, cover A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, cover A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, cover
Exhibition in the designer's work space. Right-click the images and chose "open in new window" to view bigger.



Below is the Arouet specimen created for the exhibition. It shows the one specific style of the typeface that was created for the festival's publications.

A bespoke typeface for the 48h Neukölln festival, Arouet specimen for exhibition
Right-click the images and chose "open in new window" to view bigger.



Who else was involved

client: Kulturnetzwerk Neukölln e.V., Dr. Martin Steffens

project management: Thomas Lehner (www.thomaslehner.com) and Dirk Heider (www.dirk-heider.de)

further contributors: Micol Favini (maps, www.micol.ch), Melanie Fischbach (www.fishcanswim.de), Tanja Kapahnke (www.kapahnke-rv.de) and Arne Teubel (www.guerillamedia.org)



In related news

The blog of Slanted magazine reported about this project.
Read more...
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created   Jul. 31, 2012
updated  Aug. 04, 2012
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